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GDPR has made life easier for cyberciminals

(Image credit: Image source: Shutterstock/Sergey Nivens)

New research conducted by domain name and DNS-based cyber threat intelligence firm DomainTools has revealed that over 50 per cent of security professionals think changes to Whois will make the Internet a safer place for scammers.

During the recent Infosecurity Europe conference in London, the firm surveyed 326 security professionals regarding the impact of GDPR on a range of important cybersecurity functions including network defence, threat hunting and risk assessment.

When GDPR came into effect this May, certain PII data was redacted from Whois records making things much more difficult for security professionals who depend on this data to keep global Internet users safe online. Of those surveyed, 86 per cent were aware that GDPR had affected Whois data and 58 per cent said that the removal of this data will help make the Internet 'a safer place for scammers'.

CEO of DomainTools, Tim Chen offered further insight on the importance of this data to security professionals, saying:

“The results of this survey show that the security community understands just how significant Whois data is to the important work they do. The Internet is an open network, fundamentally operating on trust. Helping to enforce that trust are systems like Whois that give individual internet users insight into who is behind a website. Applied at scale, Whois data empowers everyday security capabilities such domain and IP risk assessment and spam protection. We will continue to work as hard as we can to make sure security practitioners are included in the law as parties with a legitimate interest in the full Whois data.”

Now that the Whois data has been removed, it will be increasingly difficult for the average user and security professionals alike to discern the persons or organisation behind a website. Cybercriminals are aware of this and may exploit it to take advantage of unsuspecting users online.

Image Credit: Sergey Nivens / Shutterstock

Anthony Spadafora
Anthony Spadafora

After getting his start at ITProPortal and then working with the TechRadar Pro team for the last several years, Anthony is now the security and networking editor at Tom’s Guide where he covers everything from data breaches to how to cover your whole home or business with Wi-Fi. When not writing, you can find him tinkering with PCs and game consoles, managing cables and upgrading his smart home.